We love spring on the Charleston Coast! The weather is perfect for spending a day at the beach or exploring all the Charleston Coast has to offer. We have compiled a list of outdoor activities on the Charleston Coast so you can take full advantage of the beautiful weather!
Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge
The gorgeous Ravenel Bridge, as it is locally known, has quickly become a Charleston Icon. The Ravenel Bridge opened in July 2015 and connects Peninsular Charleston with Mt. Pleasant. The bridge has a pedestrian and bike path that provide outstanding views of the Charleston Harbor, Peninsular Charleston, and Mt. Pleasant. Walk, run, or bike your way across this Charleston Icon!
While we’re talking about the Charleston Harbor, why not take a tour of Fort Sumter? The tour includes a ferry ride of the Charleston Harbor filled with Charleston History and beautiful views. If you keep your eyes peeled, you will likely see a dolphin or two (or three!). Fort Sumter is where the Civil War began and holds an important place in American History. See where the first shots were fired and learn about Charleston’s important, and lengthy, place in American History.
Charleston City Market
The Charleston City Market is a mix of open air and enclosed stalls. Vendors sell everything from sweetgrass baskets and handmade jewelry to homemade sweets and local art. If you’re looking for a gift for your family or friends (or yourself!) be sure to stop by. The Charleston City Market is open daily year round and opens for a night market on Fridays & Saturdays.
Charleston Tea Plantation
While in Charleston, visit the only tea plantation in North America. A visit to the Tea Plantation is free! Tour the tea production building, visit the gift shop, and marvel at the acres upon acres of tea plants. The only charge (besides a souvenir from the gift shop!) is for the trolley tour. The trolley tour takes you through the tea fields and stops by the greenhouse. The closest tea plantations are in Asia, Africa, and South America making this a once in a lifetime visit!
King Street is a wonderous street that can be considered the Main St of Historic Charleston. The lower end of King Street is known for its outstanding shopping. You can spend the entire day just on this half of the street! Upper King Street (north of Calhoun Street) is home to numerous galleries, delicious restaurants, and fun bars. If you’re in town for it, we highly recommend Second Sunday on King. Taking place every second Sunday of the month throughout the year, Second Sunday on King shuts down the lower half of King Street to vehicle traffic. Pedestrians, dogs, vendors, and restaurant tables line the street for the day. Enjoy open-air dining, shopping specials, and more dog sightings than you can imagine!
What are your favorite outdoor activities on the Charleston Coast? Let us know! We are always looking for fun outdoor activities for ourselves, our families, and our guests!
Last week, we discussed when and how to renovate your vacation property. This week, we are featuring the most amazing Transformation Tuesday we have ever seen! 1215 E Arctic Ave on Folly Beach, formerly known as “The Blue Lagoon”, underwent a total renovation between September 2017-March 2018.
Now know as “Saylors’ Malibu”, 1215 E Arctic is a stunning oceanfront home which provides not just oceanfront views, but on the beach feels. The renovation was completed by one of the Lowcountry’s best teams and boy can you tell!
Custom pieces are plentiful in the home. From the custom 10-seat dining table to the live-edge hardwood custom bar in the kitchen, no piece of the home was left untouched. In the bathrooms, unique tiles on the floors and in the showers help make each room a little different from the next.
“Saylors’ Malibu” is a home you will want to vacation in year after year. Secure your 2018 and 2019 vacation today!
The cozy living room lacked cohesion before the renovation. Now, the living room radiates perfection. The sectional sofa ensures seating for the whole family while you watch tv, read your favorite book, or just stare out the gorgeous new windows!
The designers kept a similar, mostly white, open and airy feel in the kitchen. But, the custom cabinets and custom live-edge hardwood bar top enhance the natural beauty of the space. The new windows leave you feeling like you’re on the beach from the comfort of the kitchen.
New furniture and simple, understated accent pieces tie together one of the guest bedrooms.
The master bedroom feels more sophisticated now. The new floor to ceiling windows provide natural light that balances the dark wood of the furniture.
In the master bathroom, a change in paint color and opening the walk-in shower changes the entire feel of the room. The textured tile in the shower provides depth to the space.
Updating the railings and porches, along with painting the exterior, makes the outside living spaces more desirable. Take an afternoon nap in the hammock “on the beach” without getting sandy!
Looking for things to do on the Charleston Coast this April? We’ve gathered some of our favorite local events and activities. Check them out and let us know which one is your favorite!
Migratory Bird Walk
April 14 & 21, May 12
Visit the Center for Birds of Prey for a Migratory Bird Walk with experienced birding guides. Recreational birdwatching is becoming a favorite past time across the country. Be sure to bring your binoculars and camera!
Charleston Outdoor Fest
April is the perfect time to enjoy the outdoors in the Lowcountry. Head to the James Island County Park for a weekend of canoeing, stand-up paddleboarding, rock climbing, and more! Enjoy live music and vendors all weekend. And even try your hand at archery or mountain biking with the Try It Pass!
Shaggin’ on the Cooper
Put on your dancing shoes and head over the Mt Pleasant Waterfront Park for an evening of shag dancing and live music. The Carolina Shag is a descendant of the Jitterbug and originated in Carolina Beach, North Carolina. You don’t want to miss this fun-filled evening!
Blessing of the Fleet & Seafood Festival
Join locals and visitors alike for the Blessing of the Fleet. Spend the day celebrating the local fishing and shrimping industry. Watch the Boat Parade, enjoy delicious seafood tastings, and participate in a shag dance competition
The Charleston Coast is full of things to do year-round but things really amp up in Spring. What are some of your favorite Lowcountry events and things to do? Let us know in the comments!
February 7th is national Book Direct day. What does this mean? Well, when you book directly through a property management company, like Charleston Coast Vacations, you get the best price and the best service available. Third party sites, like Airbnb and VRBO, upcharge your reservation 10%-20%! This equates to hundreds, sometimes even thousands, of dollars extra on your vacation. Save that money so you have more to spend during your Charleston Coast vacation!
Booking through local companies means you get an insider’s knowledge of the area you are visiting, along with the property you are renting. Local property managers visit the properties they manage regularly, often once a week, and can tell you everything you want to know about the property! Does the house have a crockpot? Is there a grill? How many pillows are in the house? At Charleston Coast Vacations, our local property managers are here to help you have the best vacation ever.
But there is more to booking a vacation rental than the property. You must consider the area you will be staying in and what there is to do. If you’ve never visited the Charleston Coast before or if you’re a regular to our lovely seaside towns, booking directly through a local company ensures you get the best recommendations on things to do. At Charleston Coast Vacations, our guest services representatives are here to help you plan your vacation. We have restaurant recommendations, we know the best tours in town, and can tell you all the best spots for surfing on the Charleston Coast.
The properties we manage are listed on some of these third-party sites. This is so our homeowners receive national, and sometimes international, exposure. But, we are a local, family-run company serving the Charleston Coast for over 28 years. Our goal is for our guests to enjoy the Charleston Coast while creating beach memories to last a lifetime. So sit back, relax, and book direct today.
When booking a vacation on the Charleston Coast, one rarely thinks of snow, even in the colder winter months. But, a snow-filled beach vacation is exactly what our guests received to start 2018.
Snowstorms on the Charleston Coast are rare, but not unprecedented. Typically the storms consist of small flurries, leaving only a light dusting of snow and never lasting more than a day. However, there have been three record-breaking snowstorms in Charleston’s history. The last big snowstorm followed just months after hurricane Hugo, arriving over Christmas in 1989. The ‘89 snow storm dumped a record eight inches of snowfall over a two day period. Southerners not used to plummeting temperatures or frozen water were treated to their first white Christmas.
This year, the Charleston Coast rang in the New Year with a storm. Snow began falling on the first Wednesday of 2018 and left the Lowcountry buried under five inches of snow! Now, since the Charleston Coast is not used to even minor snowfall, let alone five inches, roads, businesses, and schools, were all shut down. Putting safety first, our small but buzzing city came to a complete halt.
Most of our guests that stayed with us through the storm were visiting from much colder areas of the US. For many of these “snowbirds,” escaping to the Charleston Coast is a means of evading the freezing temperatures back home. Boy, were these guests in for a surprise this year! Here’s what one lucky guest had to say about the unexpected snow:
“We actually had a GREAT time. There was something about expecting 60 degree weather (or better) and then instead spending a week at a cold beach that turned out to be perhaps our best vacation in Folly ever. We come fairly often (right after Christmas), to get away from cold Virginia (and Colorado for my dad). Instead, we (and everyone else) struggled with terrible weather and we had a blast:…Making snow angels on the beach…Making little snowmen on our balcony…We’ll be back next year…we would be a very lucky family to have half as much fun as we did this year.” – Karen E
The Charleston Oceanfront Villas is a community of condos ranging from 3-4 bedrooms but not all condos are rentals, there are full-time residents in the building. The community is gated with no assigned parking and the option for covered or open-air parking. There are two elevators and two pools in the community. The pools are seasonal and are the place to be in the summer! Head down to the pool early to snag your lounge chairs and set yourself up for a day of relaxation.
The proximity to Center St. makes these condos ideal for those who simply want to park their car and walk everywhere on vacation! In the mood for some seafood? Great! Walk across the street to Loggerhead’s for local oysters and music on the deck. If you prefer oceanfront dining then walk over to Blu for a spectacular dining experience.
You can easily go fishing for the afternoon on the Folly Beach Fishing Pier. Take the short two block walk to the pier, grab your fishing license from the pier store, then head out for an afternoon of sun and fun! After a long afternoon fishing, end the day with a cocktail and an appetizer at Pier 101.
Every condo at the Charleston Oceanfront Villas has an oceanfront view but the exact view depends on the condo’s location in the building. Some villas have better views of the pier while others have a better view of the sunsets. All condos have an oceanfront balcony or sundeck, the perfect place for your morning coffee.
The villas range in prices, just as they range in the number of bedrooms and decor. The get the best price available, always book directly through Charleston Coast Vacations. We are local and can provide answers to all your questions about the condos or about the area. In addition, we love Folly and the Charleston Coast, let us help make your vacation a breeze.
Today, we cover Dewees Island Frequently Asked Questions!
What time is check-in? Check-out?
Check-in and check-out times are house specific. Please refer to the “Important Check-In Information” email that we send to you 15 days prior to your check-in date.
Occasionally, early check-in is available for a $100 fee. To arrange early check-in, please call or email us at least 72 hours prior to check in.
Do we have to bring all our groceries on the ferry?
Yes, but you don’t have to bring them all on the same run you are arriving on. Some families choose to have part of their group take all the luggage on the check-in ferry, while the rest of the group then shops and returns on a later boat. It is entirely up to you. We will assist the first group of arriving renters in each home; subsequent arrivals need to be greeted by your party.
Watch this video for helpful tips on how to pack for Dewees Island!
Does everyone in my party need to check in at the same time?
No, but you are responsible for picking up and orienting guests who arrive on later ferries.
Where should we stand while waiting for the ferry?
Please wait at the top of the ferry waiting area, and not on the dock. Be aware that your luggage carts should be under the awning and out of the way in order for passengers to disembark (think airplane).
Do I wheel my own cart down onto the dock?
Unless the mate tells you otherwise, able-bodied passengers should wheel their own carts on the dock to the loading zone of the ferry. The mate will help you get the cart onto the boat.
What’s with the Ferry Passes?
Dewees Island is a private island and access is provided via a ferry system. Ferry passes allow you to come and go as you please. The cost is a $53 pass, per person, for the week. Day visitors pay $27 (good up to 2 nights).
We will have called in all the names for the ferry. Board the ferry and find a seat. You will sign in on a clipboard once the boat pulls away. Sign in for Lot 200 – that’s the code for Charleston Coast Vacations! Please send names of all members of your party by 30 days prior to check in. You may add names here. Name additions within 72 hours of your check-in date are not guaranteed.
What are the Ferry hours?
The Dewees ferry runs hourly. The first run to the island on weekdays is 6:00 am and off the island is 6:30 am. Saturday, the first run to the island is 7:00 am and off the island is 7:30 am. On Sunday, the first run to the island is 8:00 am and off the island is 8:30 am. The last run to the island is 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday. On Friday and Saturday, it runs until 12 midnight. To save money and fuel, the ferry does not run is there are no riders.
Ferry runs off the island are “on demand” on the half hour. Be sure to call the ferry at 843-568-3990 at least 45 minutes before you want to leave the island. For example, if you want to go off the island at 10:30 a.m., call the ferry BETWEEN 9:30 and 9:50 am and say, “I’d like to be picked up on the 10:30 am ferry.” Tell them how many people, carts of luggage, dogs, and wheelchairs/strollers you may be bringing. The captain will then decide which boat to bring. If you have not called for a reservation, then you may have to wait until the next ferry. Here is a link to the latest video about catching the ferry.
Can we ride on the top deck?
Yes! Be sure pets are leashed and kids are supervised. Hang onto your hat and have fun watching for dolphins, turtles, and manatees!
What if we are late catching the ferry?
The ferry leaves Isle of Palms on the hour and departs from Dewees Island on the half hour (as long as you’ve called to reserve). You are late if you arrive one minute after your scheduled ferry check-in time. It takes a few minutes to unload your cart and get your gear onto the boat. Please don’t stress out the captain by arriving at the parking lot exactly at departure and expect to get on the ferry. It is his job to depart on time. If you miss your scheduled ferry, Charleston Coast Vacations cannot guarantee there will be room for your party on the next ferry. Bottom line: if you’re not early, you’re late.
How much bottled water will I need for the week?
NONE! Please don’t stress out our resources by bringing bottled water to the island. The water on the island is perfectly safe to drink, and there is a great tasting R-O filtration system at the landings building. If you must, bring your own 3-gallon bottle– and leave it behind for the next guest to refill. Cases of individual bottles of water should not be on the ferry: you will be subject to a fine.
Speaking of water, can I take a 20-minute outdoor shower on Dewees Island?
Water is EXTREMELY expensive on Dewees! I know you’re on vacation, but being on an island with its own recycled water makes it unique. Only shower when needed and make it quick. Only do laundry when you have a full load. Only run the dishwasher when you have a full load. Make sure all outdoor hoses, showers, and fish cleaning sinks are OFF. If you notice a running toilet, shut that toilet off and email email@example.com or call us at (888) 250-8730 IMMEDIATELY. If the owner is billed for excessive use of water, it’s possible that the bill will be passed along to you, the guest. So please be mindful of water usage!
How should I pack?
Please pack lightly. Most homes have basic beach gear and chairs. Don’t hesitate to call if you have questions. You can use one or two of the rolling hand carts at the Dewees Marina to load your groceries and other belongings onto the ferry. Handcarts are limited to two per property so please be mindful. If you arrive at a crowded time, your luggage may need to wait for the next boat, or you can choose to hand carry your luggage onto the ferry. Click here for more packing tips.
Where do we go when we get off the Ferry at Dewees?
Once you land on Dewees, roll your luggage cart up the ramp and out of the way. Find your assigned golf cart and drive it up towards the front of the dock. Load your luggage onto your golf cart and return the luggage cart to the top of the ferry landing. Use your map to locate your lot number. If you will be arriving after the sun has set, please bring a flashlight to see the lot numbers.
Will we have house keys?
You will receive house keys in your check-in packet. Two keys are provided per property.
Where do we find the golf carts?
When the ferry arrives at Dewees, the mate will take your handcart off the ferry. You then roll it to the top, past the covered dock and out towards the golf carts. Leave the handcart at the golf cart loading and unloading area. Golf carts will be labeled with the Lot Number of the property you are renting or the reservation holders last name. They are labeled on the front and driver side. The golf carts are all individually owned. Please only drive the carts designated for your home.
BE SURE to plug the golf carts in overnight, every night. When plugged in correctly, the meter on the charger will move to the right and show how many amps are being used. If the meter doesn’t move, try plugging in the cart again. It can be a little tricky when you first learn to plug in the carts as it sometimes takes force to get the plug completely in.
Renters must have a valid driver’s license. All drivers must have a license on them while behind the wheel. Absolutely NO children behind the wheel of a golf cart. It is a motor vehicle and you are subject to a fine.
Does the house come with linens?
The house comes with sheets and towels. Clean towels and sheets will be stacked on the beds when you arrive.
What grocery items does the house have?
Each property has two rolls toilet paper in each bathroom, one roll of paper towels in the kitchen, a kitchen towel, dish sponge or brush, hand soap in the bathrooms, two dishwasher tablets, laundry detergent, dryer sheets, a standard coffee maker, coffee filters, and a few garbage bags.
These items are meant as a starter supply to get your vacation off on the right foot. If you are staying longer than a few nights, you will likely need to provide your own supplies to last the duration of your trip.
Does the property have wifi?
Every private house offers internet access through AT&T. As the island is remote, this service can be intermittent at times and should not be expected as an amenity.
Can I have a bonfire on the beach?
No. Bonfires, fireworks, and firearms are strictly prohibited on Dewees Island. If these items are found, you will be fined and asked to leave the island.
Does the property have a grill?
Propane grills are accessible for every property. Houses offer private grills and suites share a community grill. Public Safety refills propane as needed. They can be reached at 843 296 4952.
Where do I put my garbage and recycling?
Please separate and deliver all garbage and recycling to the on-island facility. Please reference your map for the garbage and recycling location.
Will my cell phone work on Dewees Island?
Cellular service is intermittent on the island, however, all private homes offer a phone for local calls.
Are there restaurants on Dewees Island?
Dewees Island does not offer restaurants or stores, however, excellent options are available on the Isle of Palms and surrounding areas.
What is there to do on Dewees Island?
Our Environmental and Social Committees have scheduled a wide variety of programs on the island, particularly in the summer. If there are events happening during your stay, they will be posted on a sign hanging from the Dewees dock as well as our Facebook page.
Check out our Sea Turtle conservation program. Every day a volunteer walks the island to look for turtle tracks and report to the island’s turtle conservation team. If you are interested participating in this, please call Judy at 843-259-1713. Here is a video about walking with the turtle team.
FISHING: Click here for specific tips. Anyone fishing on Dewees is required to have to a South Carolina Saltwater Recreational Fishing License. This includes anyone recreationally harvesting fish, oysters, clams, shrimp, and crab. For additional details, please see SC DNR’s website. Fishing licenses can be purchased online or by telephone, 1-866-714-3611, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; or by visiting fishing gear stores.Fishing gear and bait can be purchased at Haddrells Point Tackle, Charleston Angler, or the Isle of Palms Marina Store.
If you are not sure what you are doing and would like to rent a kit for a crabbing or fishing lesson, let us know and we can schedule that for you. Or you can hire a captain for a private inshore fishing lesson. Captains Ben Floyd and Chad Ferris will both pick you up at the Dewees Dock for a day of fishing.
Here is a link to ourisland map. Print a copy and bring it along!
As always, if you haven’t liked us on Facebook or followed us on Instagram, be sure to do so! And don’t forget to download the Dewees Island app for the most up to date information.
Yes, departure housekeeping is included with your stay. Linens for the beds and baths are provided for your stay. Plan to purchase or bring pool and beach towels.
Does the property have beach chairs?
At most properties, beach equipment like chairs and umbrellas are not guaranteed with the rental. Occasionally, previous guests or the homeowner will leave some equipment behind. We recommend bringing, purchasing, or renting these items for your vacation.
Are paper products included?
A starter pack of paper products is included with your vacation: 1-2 rolls of toilet tissue per restroom, 1-2 rolls of paper towels in the kitchen, a liner in each trash bin, a few dishwasher tablets
If you’re staying for more than a few days, you will likely need to bring or purchase these items from the grocery store.
Are pantry items in the property? Salt and pepper? Spices?
Pantry items like salt, pepper, oil, and spices are not guaranteed. Occasionally, previous guests or the homeowner will leave some behind. We recommend bringing or purchasing these items for your vacation.
Does the property have a crockpot?
Specialty cooking items like crockpots, large steamer pots, and gravy boats are not included with every rental property. If you need a particular kitchen item for your vacation please plan to bring it with you.
Does the property have a hair dryer?
Hair dryers are often provided by the homeowner but, due to their small size, they often go missing. If a hair dryer is important, we recommend bringing one with you.
Does the property have internet?
Yes! All properties managed by Charleston Coast Vacations have wireless internet. Please note, during times of high occupancy on the islands, the internet speeds will vary.
For more information and additional frequently asked questions, check out our welcome video!
This feature Friday we are featuring Too Sandy, located at 2 Sand Dune Ln, Isle of Palms, SC. Our featured property, Too Sandy, is located in the quiet Beachside community, centrally located to everything Isle of Palms has to offer.
Too Sandy is a quaint, 3-bedroom, 2 bathroom ocean view beach cottage. Located just across the street from the beach, a quick 3-minute walk will have your toes in the sand. The Beachside neighborhood boasts a community pool and community tennis court.
The first thing you notice about Too Sandy upon arrival is the beautifully landscaped yard and ample parking. The second thing you notice is the large sun deck. This deck has comfortable Adirondack chairs and gets plenty of light. Enjoy your morning coffee or afternoon nap on the deck, all while looking out at the ocean. If a screened porch is more your style, don’t worry, Too Sandy has you covered! The screened porch features outdoor dining and is located off the living room and master bedroom.
Inside the glass front door, you are welcomed into the relaxing cottage. Too Sandy’s open floor plan allows you to lounge in the living room while you hold a conversation with someone in the kitchen. Speaking of the kitchen, it is huge! Plenty of space for cooking, eating, and a card game all at the same time.
The master bedroom is on the right side of the house and features a beautiful king bed. The master has an en-suite bath with a walk-in shower and private access to the screened porch. The two remaining bedrooms sit on the opposite side of the home and share a bathroom. Each bedroom has two twin beds, a flatscreen TV, and lots of natural light.
Too Sandy is a cozy beach cottage perfect for families or a few friends who want a quiet getaway at the beach. Once at Too Sandy, you will not want to leave. Families and friends return to this cozy beach cottage year after year to rest and relax. Start your tradition and book your stay today!
1603 E Ashley Ave is a spacious oceanfront home with 5 bedrooms and 3 full bathrooms that sleeps up to 13 people. 1603 E Ashley Ave is perfect for large family vacations, offering ample gathering space.
You are welcomed to 1603 E Ashley Ave, Pride & Joy, with a grand staircase that leads to the front door of the raised home. Once inside, the open floor plan allows your eyes to look straight out to the Atlantic Ocean. The renovated kitchen is spacious and features a breakfast bar for enjoying a quick bowl of cereal before heading to the beach! Continue through to the dining area then to the living room which holds comfortable, modern couches. The subtle coastal decor and floor to ceiling windows and doors allow your mind to switch to “Island Time”.
Just off the living room in Pride & Joy is the expansive screened in porch. Relax in one of the rocking chairs while you watch surfers up and down the beach. Step out of the screened in porch to the small sundeck and continue walking down your private beach access to the beach! At 1603 E Ashley Ave, you are just steps from enjoying a morning hunt for shark teeth or an afternoon romp in the Atlantic Ocean.
Back inside, the first floor holds 4 of the 5 bedrooms: 2 on the left and 2 on the right. Each set of bedrooms is connected with a Jack & Jill bathroom. It’s difficult to miss the subtle pops of color in the bedrooms – from the deep blues to the seafoam greens, the bedrooms at 1603 E Ashley Ave invite you to relax!
Head up the stairs in 1603 E Ashley Ave to the final bedroom. This bedroom holds a king bed and 3 twin beds with an en-suite bathroom and outstanding views of the Atlantic Ocean.
1603 E Ashley Ave, Pride & Joy, is located within walking distance of the eastern tip of Folly Beach. This deserted area will transport you to a different time: less crowded beach, bone trees, and shelling galore. The views of the Morris Island Lighthouse, whether on a clear or cloudy day, are worth the short walk.
Book your next family vacation at 1603 E Ashley Ave, Pride & Joy. Want to enjoy a winter weekend at Folly Beach? Visit our website or calls us to book 1603 E Ashley Ave for 20% off a stay of 4 nights of more for the remaining open dates in November & December 2017!